High Back Chair – 1904

The High Back Chair was designed in 1904 by the Austrian artist, architect, and designerJosef Hoffmann, as part of theArts and Craftsmovement.

High Back Chair - 1904.
High Back Chair – 1904

Image source:https://www.masterart.com/artworks/4315/josef-hoffmann-high-back-chair

AboutHigh Back Chair

The High Back Chair executed byWiener Werkstättedepicts is a very simple design object, characterized by a high back, with strips from the smooth surface that forms linear geometries.This chair demonstratesa rational simplification of forms. Yet, at the same time, the grid of squares piercing the rectangular back splat illustrates the fusion of decorative and structural elements typical of theWiener Werkstätte.

Highback Chair, J. Hoffmann, 1904, Museum of Modern Art
Highback Chair, J. Hoffmann, 1904, Museum of Modern Art

Image source:https://www.masterart.com/artworks/4315/josef-hoffmann-high-back-chair

A chair as an art masterpiece

TheWiener Werkstättewas a production community of visual artists bringing together architects, artists, and designers established in 1903 byJosef Hoffmann,Koloman Moser,andFritz Waerndorferin Vienna, Austria.In this community were created many everyday objects which were elevated to some art objects, like the High Back Chair.

Hoffmann‘s designs embraced the beauty of geometry in pieces that feature grids and angular forms.Hoffmann considered everything he created work. With the High Back Chair, he brought to the domestic and built environment a new level ofelegance and simplicity.

Josef Hoffmann- High back chair seen from behind.
Josef Hoffmann- High back chair

Image source:https://www.masterart.com/artworks/4315/josef-hoffmann-high-back-chair

Data sheet

Period:20th century
Materials:Oak, oak veneer, beech and deerskin seat
Dimensions:114.5 x 49.5 x 41 cm (45¹/₈ x 19¹/₂ x 16¹/₈ inches)

Manufacturer:attributed to Johann Soulek for the Wiener Werkstätte, Vienna

Exhibitions:“Yearning for Beauty for the 100th Anniversary of the Wiener Werkstaette”, MAK, Vienna, 2003-04.

Info sources:



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